The garage door you choose for your home is not as unimportant as you might assume, as the right door adds security to the garage and can also help to insulate the home, if you have an attached garage. Note a few tips on choosing a garage door for your home when it's time to shop.
The term R-value refers to the insulating qualities of building materials, and it's also used to describe garage doors. An R-value of about 3 is somewhat standard and will keep your materials inside the garage from being frozen during wintertime, but for maximum insulation for your home, choose a door with an R-value of 10. This is especially needed in climates with long, cold winters or if you work in your garage and need this added insulation.
The threshold is the bottom part of the garage door where it meets the pavement. To keep out rain and snow, choose a larger threshold that seals this area. You may note that many thresholds are made of soft rubber so they can easily brush along the pavement as the garage door is lowered or raised. Opt for one that is longer and thicker so you keep out rain, snow, and even cold air. Doors with a thin threshold will do little to protect that gap along the bottom of the door.
Steel garage doors are typically made in layers. A single layer door is thinner and more lightweight and can be good if your automatic opener should ever fail and you need to open the door manually until you get it fixed. However, double layer and even triple layer doors have additional backings on the doors with layers of foam or another material between them. This can make the door a better insulator and note that it also acts as a noise barrier. If you work in your garage with loud power tools or if the garage is located right under someone's bedroom, you might invest in a triple layer door for maximum sound absorption.
Don't overlook the style of a home's garage door. A long single panel can make it look modern and industrial, whereas raised panels can make the door more traditional. Choose a door with a line of windows to create a more homey and inviting look from the curb. Wood doors often have a backing of metal to make them very sturdy, so if you like the look of wood but are concerned about security and the strength of the door, note the backing so you have the style you love along with a strong, sturdy door.